Even before I decided to go to Carolina, I knew I wanted to be a Tar Heel. One time at the airport in Pennsylvania, I was wearing a Carolina sweatshirt and this random man yells at me “UNC Sucks, Go Duke.” I was in awe that 10 hours away people still cared about the UNC. It was the first time I realized the power of UNC.
I am very proud to be Tar Heel. Always will be, even after the loss last night. Being part of this campus and this community is an honor. However I am well aware of the perks that this school will give me for my future. I know that people will look highly on my degree when I graduate. I know that our alumni community is strong and supportive. People will know I worked my butt off for 4 years to earn my degree.
It is fun while here at UNC to run into people from my hometown especially who went to my rival high school. I occasionally wear my high school sweatshirt out to social places and people will come up to me and make comments about my school, which was John T. Hoggard High. I realized this competition starts from pride of our own high schools. I was very proud to be a Hoggard Viking; we were a great academic public school with great sports. According to usnews.com, Hoggard is ranked 11th in the state.
A new law has been passed in North Carolina that mirrors Jeb Bush’s law in Florida that grades public schools in North Carolina. So I, and I am assuming many of my classmates, were lucky to go to a good High School but what happens to people who don’t? The grades show more about the socio-economic demographic of the school then reflecting the teaching of the school. A News and Observer article about the issue cited the trend. They wrote that 90% of schools where 1 in 5 students is on free or reduced lunch is awarded an A or B. But 80 percent of schools where at least 8 of 10 children qualify for a free or reduced lunch received a D or F grade. Obviously there are few exceptions. Similar to No Child Left Behind, the schools who earn D or F are threatened with the funding being taken away. All it is doing is drawing attention to the lower income schools. Our word of the week in class was adaptability. This law was is not pliable. It cannot bend to adapt to different settings and different places.
Everyone should be able to take pride in their school and education. What is North Carolina showing the youth if they can’t even take pride in their own schools. By giving a school and F, what sign are you sending to the students in that school? You are not good enough. You are failing. We should take pride in all schools and help get those who may be behind up to create a more equal school system.